IFR blog > Student questions
How do I get started in IFR?

I have heard a lot of good things about IFR. I want to begin practicing the method but I'm not sure where to start. Can you tell me what materials I need?

Do you picture the IFR Tonal Map in Exercise 1?

Do you define the first note you play in your daily meditation exercise to be any note of the major scale? Or do you leave out that awareness of where you are on the tonal map for this exercise?

Am I ready for the IFR jam tracks?

I want to purchase IFR Jam Tracks Level 1 but I don't know if my current level of knowledge is enough to be able to use them. Right now I'm practicing IFR Exercise 2 and I'm in the Seven Worlds exercise. Do I need to go farther or is this enough to start improvising with the jam tracks?

Staying in control with Seven Worlds

I get confused and lose my place in Seven Worlds when I try to improvise too freely with the notes. Can you give me some advice on how to tackle this problem?

Do I need to read sheet music to understand IFR?

I've heard so many great things about IFR. Is it necessary for me to read sheet music to understand the concepts in your book? I know my major and minor scales and I'm working on my inversions. Is that enough for me to grasp the material in IFR?

Why do you call it note 6?

I'm used to calling the root of a minor key "note 1" but I notice you often call it note 6. Why wouldn't we just call it note 1?

How does IFR address pentatonic scales?

I enjoy the Improvise For Real method very much. Just wanted to ask, with pentatonic scales being so important in music around the world, and particularly loved by guitarists, how can we incorporate them into our practice?

How long should I practice Exercise 2 before moving to Exercise 3

I am totally immersed in your system and find that Exercise 2 will keep me busy for the next few months. I practice IFR every day for about one hour. What comfort level should I hope to achieve in Exercise 2 before trying to attempt Exercise 3?

How to master interval jumps in your IFR singing practice

One of the first "rites of passage" that IFR students experience is the transition from singing scale notes mechanically to singing freely and creating melodies with them. As with most things, it's only the first couple of steps that are difficult. Soon you'll be on your way, composing your own melodies all day long.

What about minor sounds and blues sounds?

If the major scale is the origin of all Western music, then how should we think about songs that are in a minor key, or blues music that doesn't seem to be based on the major scale at all?